Congratulations! 2024 Biography Prize Announcement

The Center for Biographical Research is pleased to announce the winner of the 2024 Biography Prize for outstanding creative, critical, or theoretical work in the field of life writing by University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa graduate students. 

This year, we awarded the prize to Kristin Olsen Santana for “The Waiting Room.” We also recognized Kalilinoe Detwiler’s “Live Again: Rebuilding Intimacy Through Mediation” with an honorable mention. More detailed descriptions of the projects and the judges’ comments appear below. 

“The Waiting Room” by Kristin Olsen Santana

The prize committee found “The Waiting Room” to be at once brave, beautiful, powerful, tender, and tough.

“We appreciated your insights into the loneliness of chronic pain and illness and also into the gendered experiences of what beauty is and what it means to be loveable. We were also impressed by your powerful use of metaphor.”

“Live Again: Rebuilding Intimacy Through Mediation” by Kalilinoe Detwiler

The Prize Committee appreciated how this ambitious multimodal project makes significant contributions to life writing studies.

“We thought you did wonderful work interweaving your grandmother’s story with your own as you provided insights into what it means to tell one’s own and a family member’s story that, from Kanaka Maoli perspective, adds to and sometimes challenges understandings of what it means to write a life. We were especially struck by your explorations of intergenerational memory, cartography, and wahi pana.”